Mix different paving stones for a beautiful garden
Many garden owners show hesitation, or even anxiety, about mixing different “interior design materials” in the garden. If you have once chosen to lay concrete slabs on the terrace, the concrete will all too often be used, for example, also on stairs and as treads and curbs.
Of course, a uniform choice can give a nice effect, but in many cases the garden would be much more “exciting” with a mixture of, for example, grass, wood and stone. Not least coarser wood, which slips and grinds, does amazingly well in combination with natural stone, hewn paving stones or maybe even concrete.
Although the claim that a garden is never finished has become something of a common saying, its truth content is very large and usually practical.
It is often meant that one or another plant becomes too old and must be replaced, that you want to try something new or that one garden year is not the same as the other.
But really, the saying is probably more clearly linked to the fact that the garden’s function follows the owner’s family development. The sandbox garden becomes a ballpark, the lawn becomes a kitchen garden, the ornamental plant becomes a fruit section, etc.
Thorough reorganization of a garden often costs quite a lot of money and no matter how well-motivated they may be, it is of course an advantage to avoid them as much as possible. This can often be done by looking to future needs from the beginning, and at least to some extent.
If you are thinking about outdoor pavers, travertine pavers are the best option. They are affordable, durable & Non-slip.
In that case, only a small part of the facility will probably be affected on the day, e.g. the ornamental plants can make room for more useful plants.
One of the simpler ways to make such delimitations on level ground is to arrange one or more level differences with the help of excavated masses. It does not have to be anything more advanced than “lifting” up a flower bed, a vegetable garden or shrub planting, which can then also be easier to manage.
The ground can then be held in place with larger natural stones, low walls of brick or concrete blocks, large paving stones, logs, horizontal timber, discarded railway sleepers, etc. Facilities of this type also often require low stairs or stairways, for which equivalent material can be used.
In smaller gardens, there is always the risk that heavy materials can be perceived as too dominant and even out of place, but if you let a section of wooden block be replaced by brick or limestone, or rotate sleepers with cobblestones and paving stones with concrete slabs, that risk is significantly reduced.
Other ways to “lighten up” larger, hard surface coatings are to tie gravel or concrete surfaces with transverse logs in a stairway, to break up strictly laid paving stone surfaces with cobblestone sections and to join various hard coatings with grass or even flowering, trampling plants.
Paving stones of rough limestone, do very well together with vegetation because the fracture surface easily blends into the surroundings. Here the limestone is matched with an outdoor kitchen in brick.
Some important facts about laying technology
The choice of material for the garden’s hard floors and low retaining walls is of course largely a matter of taste, but among other things, soil conditions can also mean a lot.
Ground brick is a hard-fired, beautiful material, which, however, is not completely cold-resistant. The soil must be drained well and the stones laid in about 10 cm of casting sand. Aisles must slope 2 cm per m for drainage. It is best to lay the stones on edge.
Limestone and slate
Limestone and slate are versatile material that is mostly used in an irregular format with a normal claw surface, ie natural fracture surface. Slate is usually 3040 mm thick, limestone 50 70 mm. The laying bed of seed gravel is about 10 cm.
Compared to stone, wood does not get so hot and does not store as much cold. Square block can be laid with tight joints. Joints between round blocks must be joined with packed gravel. The laying bed of gravel should be at least 50 mm deep.
The cube height should be at least 100 mm, preferably slightly higher for the round cube. The suitable tread surface for the square block is 100 x 100 mm, for round block 100 180 mm in diameter.
Concrete slabs and stones
Concrete slabs and stones are the cheapest material, easy to lay thanks to their regularity. The surface layer can be smooth or rough of e.g. pea single, colored or uncoloured.
Standard plate sizes are 35 x 35 cm and 50 x 50 cm, respectively. Usual thickness is 50 mm, 70 80 cm is recommended for car traffic. The laying bed should be at least 50 mm gravel.
“Concrete stone” is becoming more common, including paving stone imitations. If you have plenty of time, you can cast different types of ground concrete yourself.
Wooden trolleys are a comfortable and usually easy-to-lay outdoor floor, which, however, requires a stable and very flat surface of at least 10 cm sand bed.
Maximum batten distance should be only 40 50 cm and the board thickness must not be less than 20 mm. Excessively large wooden trolleys can become very dominant.
Sleepers and logs
Sleepers are one of the best materials available for steps in garden stairs. The standard sleeper length is very manageable. Keep in mind that longer logs, such as discarded telephone poles, can cause transport and handling concerns.
A disadvantage of sleepers and posts is irregular access. Most of the material is sold through advertisements in local newspapers.
All wood that is laid with direct earth contact must be impregnated. Always find out which impregnation method has been used and if possible how old the impregnation is. Some agents can, among other things, cause severe root damage to the surrounding vegetation.
A distinction is made between small paving stones, large paving stones and cobblestones. Regardless of type and joint, the stones should be placed in about 50 cm of gravel and with as dense joints as possible. An exception is the large paving stone, which can be laid with, for example, half a stone’s large grass joints.
Paving stones have to be cut by hand and are therefore expensive. Occasionally, in connection with older roads and street diversions, you may come across old stone. Nowadays, paving stone imitations are made of, among other things, concrete.
Asphalt may seem like a material that has nothing to do with the garden, but it is cheap, durable, easy to keep clean and non-slip. One of the best residential pavers. In addition, it rarely needs to be adjusted. It may seem a bit neck-breaking, but asphalt can very well be combined with both wood and stone, not least with heavier wood and such natural stone as red limestone and cobblestone.
You can lay cold-liquid asphalt yourself. If you prefer to leave the job to a specialist, who also has the necessary equipment, you can still lay the base layer yourself. Note that asphalt paving has a very weak point: the edge! If this borders on grass, a substantial reinforcement is always required.
A gravel coating is not only durable and easy to install, it is also the cheapest floor and can be combined with practically all other materials. In return, both gravel pitches and walkways require some maintenance. Gravel is widely used for commercial & Architectural purposes too.
A gravel coating should rest on a 20-30 cm thick reinforcement layer of gravel or sand. On top of this, a base layer of, for example, coarse gravel and a thinner wear layer of walking gravel or stone flour with chips are placed on top.
All wood used in gardens and greenhouses should be impregnated wood. It is wood treated with so-called wood preservatives, ie chemical preparations that prevent discoloring fungi and rot fungi. However, many of these substances are also dangerous to many plants and can, among other things, cause serious root damage.
Water-soluble wood preservatives are considered less dangerous than oil-soluble ones, but there is every reason to ensure that garden plants do not come into direct contact with treated wood. In any case, not with freshly treated wood. The latter is especially true of railway sleepers, which are rot-protected with creosote.